Editor's Update September 2015

by FlyingMonkey | September 27, 2015 | (19) Posted in News


Hi guys,

It's been a while since I've done an editor's update.  Sorry about that.  I've been very busy with some new projects, a mix of work and play related endeavors.  I've been helping out with the Flite Test customer service side of things, both the live chat option through the store, and some of the emails that come flooding in every day.  It's proven to be very interesting to get that behind the curtain look at the work that the guys at Flite Test HQ do, when they're not making it look like they have fun with planes all day.


So, updates.  I've just got a few quick housekeeping details I'd like to go over to let people know what's going on with the articles area.  


Reviews of Articles.

I love seeing the positive comments, and the 4 and 5 ratings for articles.  Those are great, and I try to use that feedback to help the authors improve based on what people seem to like.  Not only do I look at the level of ratings, but the number of people leaving ratings.  One of my "magic" powers as editor is to be able to see who is leaving ratings, and what rating level they're leaving.  

While positive rankings are great, the negative ones have value too.  I have tried to contact people who leave reviews of 3 stars or less.  I want to ask them what it was they didn't like about the articles.  When I get replies, it's been very helpful for me as the editor.  Unfortunately the Articles section of the Flite Test site isn't set up for back and forth communication like the forums are, so contacting the readers is challenging.

So, I am going to ask, that if you leave a 3 star rank, or less, that you take a few minutes to comment below the article on what you thought was lacking that caused you to give the lower review.  Or, you can email me at FlyingMonkey@flitetest.com.  


Article Publishing

Something else I've been trying to institute, is scheduling the publishing of the articles to three specific days.  Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.  It's mostly working.  


 Article Variety

Another point regarding the publishing of articles.  I would like to see more variety in the articles being submitted.  "Projects" are good, but there seems to be an excess of people wanting just to showcase the aircraft they've created, and while that's great, it doesn't always make for enjoyable material for the readers.  


There's six categories for the authors to choose from.

  • Just Fun
  • Projects
  • Reviews
  • Tips
  • Challenges
  • How To
I would love to have at least one article from each of these categories each each of the days articles get published.  So, if you want to increase your chances of getting published, write a How To article, or one for Challenges.  These don't seem to get much attention from the authors, so if yours is the only one, and it's ready for publication, you're getting published that day.

Request for Articles 

This leads me to the next bit I'd like to discuss.

There is a wealth of information out in the Flite Test community.  One of the things that has often impressed me with the people that I've met through the forums, and in person is their willingness to help other people.  I know that there are lots of readers out there that should be writers as well, but just don't know that they have information that other people are looking for or do not think that they can express it properly.


So, here's a few topics I think would make for great articles, broken up by category.

How To

  • HAM radio license, maybe telling about a personal pursuit and what were the challenges the person faced when studying for the exam.  I'd like to see some tips and tricks included that would help the reader pass the exam themselves.
  • What do the various numbers assoiciated with antennas mean?  How do they apply to the FPV pilot?  What should we be looking for in numbers, for different styles of flying?
Just Fun
  • Events, have you been to one?  What advice do you have for attending one.  Or have you organized one?  What's involved with that?  Make a story out of this, don't just report the facts and figures, make it an exciting tale of travel, people, and adventure.
  • Have you ever tried to recreate the excitement that a "Challenges" episode inspired in you?  Write about the creation of the idea, how you implemented, and the results.  The more foam carnage, usually the better.
Have an idea that you'd like to see written about?  Post about it here.
I think that wraps op the "short" update I wanted to share with you guys.  The article quality lately has been amazing.  I am happy to see so many people wanting to share with the rest of the community.  I've noticed the efforts being put forth by the authors to try to get their articles approved on the first try, even with me being more picky as I see new authors becoming regular contributers.
Thanks guys, keep up the good work.


julezflies on September 27, 2015
Good stuff Fred. More articles coming soon. :)
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dholcomb on September 27, 2015
Thanks for the update. We are trying. I build every day and I am crashing a lot less often these days so I have a house full of planes. We did come up with a challenge within our little group. The day we can make the paper peal off the foam we know maximum speed has been achieved. I now put extreme packing tape on the front of my wings to help prevent that. lol... Thanks again...
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canuck on September 27, 2015
I was just kidding, (you get 5 stars) always enjoy seeing what you have to say and wish I had the means to provide information for you. I'm retired caring for my mother so my means are limited as well as space for working.on projects, but I love seeing what others are up to.
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FlyingMonkey on September 27, 2015
Hmmmmm... One star huh? :D It doesn't have to be "first hand knowledge". There's lots of information on the internet, that is hard to find, but could be consolidated in an article that readers might find useful.
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shermanhartman on September 29, 2015
Left a one star review. This novel had a terrible plot line and a poor use of vocabluary. Please see me after class.

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FlyingMonkey on September 29, 2015
No apple for you.
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Eric wison on October 5, 2015
Awaiting the FT explorer!!!
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Grateful Ted on October 6, 2015
I appreciate all of the articles. A relatively new RC pilot, I purchased my first build kit from FT last week and had a blast putting it together. In fact, I found that I enjoy building as much if not more than flying. Fred answered a couple of my questions about shipping and I thought he was the "warehouse guy". I had pictured a big operation with forklifts moving pallets of kits from one end of the hanger-sized warehouse to the other. After seeing that Fred wears several hats and does at least double duty in customer support it is apparent that perhaps FT isn't quite what I thought. It pleases me that I am able to support your efforts with the odd purchase. I look forward to building the versacopter that I ordered and teaching myself to fly it -- both with the help of your extremely well produced videos. Keep up the good work Fred (and Josh, Josh, Pete, etc.).
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FlyingMonkey on October 6, 2015
Hiya Ted, Thanks!

No, it's still very much a family business, even if the company is owned by a corporation. The folks bring product home and bag up your combos on their time off. Josh and gang aren't (entirely) joking when they say that when you get hired on to Flite Test, your wife gets hired on too. They've been doing all of the manufacturing, packaging, and shipping from the old driving range that you see the episodes filmed at. Although the support you guys have been giving through your purchases in the FT store will be forcing us to change that soon.
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Damig on October 8, 2015
Hi Fred, Nice job, nice article.... and I am not just saying that because I am a Fan of all you knuckleheads... :-) You know, I think you hit the nail on the head... many come here to share ideas, many others come her to find answers and that community is Fantastic!! And it is much akin to the Ham Radio Community.... My favorite ice breaker for a ham in the area is to drive up to his house, and while looking at his Tri-band Beam, hoisted atop a 65 foot tower, and say something along the lines of "Wow I bet you can get channel 10 really Really Well good Buddy!!" As he scowl's in disgust from a comment of a CB'er, I extend my hand and say, Hi , I am Scott, WB0SMH!.

Community of friends for life. But, or And, Fred, I think many writers perhaps think its been covered, or it takes so much more talent to post (and the good ones put a lot of time in Sharing great ideas)

So, I will try to submit a couple, in hope that I can pass along some tidbit of knowledge which will spark the interest of another, giving props to those that do a sweet job, and hope to continue to have "Spit Takes" when I am sipping coffee whilst browsing the videos and seeing our Favorite Swede blowing up a remote bomb while Josh test flies his latest creation, or when Peter "Threads the Needle" with pun jet....and the best quote was: "This did not start out to be an episode, but it turned into one!"
Yes, Honorable mention to the Fire Engine Drone and the Paint Ball Delta!!

Cheers and "73's" I appreciate ya Fred
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Editor's Update September 2015